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Posts Tagged ‘Ladies of the Night’

Did you notice that just over a week ago, I changed the picture at the top of the right-hand column to the cover of my new book, The Forms of Things Unknown?  That wasn’t just a cosmetic decision; I did it to draw attention to the fact that I now have an onsite store of my own!  I’m not very good with computer stuff, so even though I decided to do this soon after the book was published and solicited (see what I did there?) some advice on how to build it from a gent knowledgeable in such things, it took me until now (and a bit of arm-twisting by Lorelei) to get around to actually doing it.  Really, PayPal makes it pretty easy; I’m just very easily overwhelmed by complex protocols with which I’m unfamiliar.  But anyhow, if you just want a regular paper or Kindle copy of the book, it’s easiest just to go through Amazon.  But if you’d like an autographed copy of either this one or Ladies of the Night, or one of the signed and numbered copies with unique sketches by Chester Brown (and signed by both of us – there are only four left!) just click on the little picture to visit my store, and don’t forget to add a note telling me how you’d like the book inscribed!  Later I plan to add other merchandise to the store, but for right now let’s just be glad I was able to get it set up in the first place; you could encourage me (and help support my activism) by buying something today, and leaving a review on Amazon too.  Just sayin’.

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At last, it’s here!  After literally years of delays, and months of design and composition, The Forms of Things Unknown is ready for sale!  This time there are two stories you haven’t seen; the first, “Trust Exercise”, opens the book and I gave a sneak preview of it back in December.  But the other, “Eight Minute Warning”, concludes the book and isn’t anything like any other story of mine you’ve ever seen (except that a sex worker is mentioned in passing).  If you’re interested, you’ll just have to buy the book!  Another thing you’ll need to buy it to see is the rest of the fantastic cover art by Chester Brown; see, this one’s a wraparound cover, so the image here is only the front.  The rest is a surprise (and yes, I’m teasing you again).  As with Ladies of the Night, I’ll be selling autographed copies here, but if you plan to buy through Amazon I have a special request:  please purchase your copy in the first week of May, in other words from this coming Monday through the following Sunday.  The reason I ask this is that a lot of sales in a short time will trigger Amazon’s algorithms and make the book much more visible to new readers who don’t know about me yet.  Also, if you like the book please write a review; a large number of positive reviews (I believe it takes 30 or so) will trigger yet another algorithm.  By taking these steps, you can help me in two ways:  once by your kind purchase of the book, and again by making it more visible to new readers; many of them may also buy Ladies of the Night!  As always, y’all have my sincere thanks, and I both hope and believe y’all will love the book!

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Three years ago, when I was about to launch my first book tour, I wrote:

In days of yore, artists tried to attract patrons; that is, noblemen or other wealthy individuals who would give them money to live on.  The artist was expected to produce poems or paintings or concerti or whatever for the patron, and the rest of the time (barring the occasional cathedral ceiling or requiem mass) was left to putter on his own to produce Great Things; the best patrons required little in return for their generosity, while others were more demanding.  Modern governments and corporations still give out grants, but since these are determined by bureaucratic politics or commercial considerations it isn’t really the same; these entities tend to expect certain results, and on a timetable at that, so there’s little room for the recipient to follow his own path while somebody else pays the bills…

Since then, my husband and I have parted ways, and I’ve returned to work full-time.  And while I’m taking steps to reduce my expenses, it’s still very nice to see my whoring income supplemented in other ways.  Of course y’all know about how to subscribe to my blog, and how to send me gifts; my new book will be coming out soon, and I’ve discussed the range of appointments and engagements available even to those who live far away from me.  Lately, Lorelei Rivers & I have even discovered that many people seem to enjoy contributing to our Sunday night Doctor Who dates by buying us dinner and other gifts (those who do receive a special extra-nudie cheesecake pic taken on the night we enjoy your gift).  But now I’d like to make it easier to make merchandise (such as books, T-shirts and whatnot) and donations available; I’m therefore considering a commercial website on which to sell my stuff.  I already own a number of domains with similar names, but I’m hopeless when it comes to actually creating websites; I’m therefore looking for some generous reader with the necessary skills to build me a small e-commerce site on which I can list the merchandise I currently have available, and add other things as I think of them (such as signed nude photos, posters of Chester Brown’s awesome art for my book covers, and anything else my whorish brain can think of).  If you know how to do this and would like to volunteer your time, please contact me; I’m looking for someone who’s willing to take on the whole project, so please don’t just email me and say “Oh, bizdalek.com is a really easy solution to exterminating your e-commerce woes,” because if you do I shall surely put a curse on you with my Evil Eye.  I am an idiot when it comes to building sites, which is why it took me literally years to try out WordPress for this blog (and if anything I find the prospect more daunting now than I did in my early forties).  No, what I’m looking for is someone willing to make a gift of his time and expertise to help me out, and be thereby forever inscribed on the rolls of top patrons of my work.  If that’s you, please e-mail me!

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Lastimg_20170304_232349 week was SASS, and though I didn’t help in planning this year I did volunteer at the kissing booth at the Harlot’s Ball on Saturday night, where quite a few lucky gents and a few lucky ladies got to sample my legendary kissing prowess for a teeny price (and in public, yet!) to benefit SWOP.  I also contributed one of the last remaining special copies of Ladies of the Night with a unique Chester Brown sketch in it as a raffle prize; there are now only four left, so if you want one you need to speak up!  And speaking of my books & Chester’s art, the cover art for The Forms of Things Unknown is now in the hands of the finish artist, who is coloring it, placing the titles & other text and preparing it to become an actual book cover.  She should have it back to me in about two weeks, after which all that remains is for me to submit all the files, examine the proof and then let you know the book is ready!  That should be right around a month from now, so keep your eyes open.  That’s all I have to tell you this week, but big things are a-brewing and I’ll keep you posted as they reach fruition.

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Five years ago, in the introduction to “Concubine“, I wrote:

I must admit that I’m surprised I’ve been able to deliver [a new story] every month; I always used to say that unlike my dependable and constant Muse of Nonfiction, my Muse of Fiction was like a sulky girlfriend:  when she wanted me she demanded my undivided attention, but when she didn’t want me I couldn’t even get her on the phone.  But ever since “The Trick”, she has visited me without fail at least once per month, usually without my even having to beg her…

ClioI repeated the joke in the foreword to Ladies of the Night, and until last year it was true.  But as my available time shrank and my commitments increased, I found that inspiration often came more slowly, and I had to beg a lot more often.  Fewer of my stories were (in my own opinion) really inspired or especially memorable, and the ones that were revealed a lot more of my soul than was the norm before.  Several of the stories came to me literally hours before publication, then this past February I cheated by letting someone else tell a story, and last month I quietly and unceremoniously slipped another type of essay into the usual story slot.  But if I keep doing that y’all are going to notice, so here we are.  Some ideas were bouncing around my brain, but as of this writing none of them has gelled and I’m very tired and about to go and get myself a milkshake.  So what I’m thinking is, I’m going to take a brief hiatus from fiction; the next story I think of will be an exclusive for my new book, The Forms of Things Unknown, which I plan to start compiling this coming week.  I know this kind of sucks, but consider that I’ve had an almost unbroken run of one story per month for six years; that’s 72 stories in all.  That’s really very damned good; I don’t think many writers are that prolific.  I also don’t think my Muse has really returned to her old sulky ways; she’s probably just tired and wants a little vacation.  Or maybe she’s suffering from PMS, or thinks I’ve been neglecting her.  Maybe this is her way of getting me to do the book.  But one way or another, I’m sure she’ll be sending me inspiration again in short order, and I’ll soon be serving up new tales on a regular basis again.  And if not, it was a good thing while it lasted!

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By the time I woke up last Thursday morning, three of the books Chester sketched and signed for me had already been purchased; another followed that evening, and another has been spoken for but the buyer wants to let others choose their sketches first and will take the last one.  So far, the books containing the sketches numbered 4, 5, 8 and 10 have been bought and delivered to their new owners; the ones you see here are the ones which are left.  If you’d like one, make sure you speak up now before someone else gets your favorite!

Last week was pretty good for me financially, despite a couple of cancellations, but other than that it was  pretty stressful.  Having to deal with taxes was not a good way to start the week, and it didn’t really get better after that; there were a host of real-life annoyances small and large which continued to stack up until Friday, at which point I was so out of juice that I simply wasn’t able to go any more.  So I simply stayed at home, made myself an omelette, worked for a while, drank enough to thoroughly relax my body and brain and sent silly texts to friends.  Definition of a true friend: someone you can text drunk at 1:30 in the morning to tell her how beautiful you look in the mirror at that moment, and she doesn’t even make fun of you.  Much.  Anyhow, I didn’t even get dressed on Saturday, but on Sunday I had a lovely brunch with another friend I haven’t seen in a couple of months, then in the afternoon I went to Big Lots.  Don’t laugh; I love bargain shopping.  Virtually nothing I own was purchased full-price, unless somebody else paid it and then gave it to me as a gift.

Anyway, I’m rather hoping this week will be better; I had a lovely dinner with one of my favorite gentlemen last night, today I’m having my hair done, and then later this week I have a major professional engagement which should be a lot of fun.  In a few weeks, I’m going to be visiting Los Angeles for about a week; I need to test my new vertigo medications (fingers crossed & pray to Hermes for a good journey, please!), I want to visit some friends, and a special gentleman is taking me to Disneyland.  So if you’d like to see me while I’m there, please let me know; I should have my dates firmed up by the end of the week.  Oh, and while we’re on the subject:  I’ll be in New Orleans for the Desiree Alliance conference from July 10th-15th.  I’ll be offering my usual advance-pay special for both trips; contact me for details if you’re interested.  And yes, I can hand-deliver a book to you to save the shipping cost.

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As I explained on Tuesday, Chester Brown and I spent a lot of time together on Sunday, and much of it was used in signing books.  The reason this took so long is that Chester did a unique custom sketch in each one, taking about half an hour each!  I then left some space for a custom inscription, signed my name, and he signed, dated and numbered each one below that.  There are only ten of these altogether, and each one is different.  So I’m going to ask $50 for each one, plus a shipping & handling fee of $20, for a total of $70.  If you’d like to buy one, please email me telling me which of the pictures you want and how you want the book inscribed; you can then PayPal me the cost and I’ll get it off to you right away!  One of these is already spoken for, but the recipient isn’t picky about which one, so as of this morning all 10 are available (though obviously that will change as people buy them).  If you’d like to see any sketch in more detail, just click on it.  Thank y’all so much for your loyalty and support; if this goes well, we’ll do a signed and numbered edition of The Forms of Things Unknown as well.  And naturally, it would also inspire me to get the book out all that much faster!

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